Demand for workers in the nation’s capital has been one of the weakest areas in the country over the past year.
Canberra employers appear to be have been anticipating the worst for some time.
The ACT has been one of the weakest jurisdictions for job advertising on the internet in the past year, surpassed only by Western Australia where the mining investment boom is fading fast.
And new government data released on Wednesday suggests that if you were looking to be a labourer in the nation’s capital in the past 12 months … forget it.
Last month’s budget confirmed that 16,500 public servant jobs will be scrapped over the next two years.
That will have spillover effects in Canberra where many federal government jobs reside.
Department of Employment data shows online job advertising in the ACT fell by six per cent in May and 16.4 per cent over the year.
Nationally it fell by 3.6 per cent in May and 3.4 per cent over 12 months.
Demand for sales workers fell 5.3 per cent nationally in May, while over the year, labourers have been given the cold shoulder, down 13.6 per cent.
In trend terms, internet jobs ads have now fallen for three months in a row, having earlier shown signs of stability.
It’s an indication that the strong full-time jobs growth recorded in the first five months of 2014 will be hard to sustain.
The department said there has been a shift in vacancies towards non-mining states during the past year.
NSW has been the main beneficiary, where jobs ads have risen 6.3 per cent.
In contrast, WA and Queensland recorded double-digit drops.
However, while the mining states may not be the place to look for a job at the moment, other data showed that the resources industry is still making a massive contribution to the economy overall.
Resources and energy commodity export earnings are estimated to rise 2.6 per cent in 2014/15 to a record $201 billion, after increasing 11 per cent in 2013/14 to $196 billion.
Such strength comes despite falling commodity prices and a persistently strong dollar impacting on export values, the Bureau of Resources and Energy Economics says.
It says while there are indications of improvements in non-mining sectors of the economy, the mining sector remained the principal source of Australia’s economic growth in the first three months of the year.
Iron ore export volumes were 27 per cent higher than a year earlier and the main driver of export growth.